take note

Dear Valued Practitioner

The HPCSA has sent out communication applicable to healthcare professionals with regard to COVID-19. We have decided to summarise the key points for ease of reference. For more information you may click here.

Read more

Kind regards

Focus on Health team

What SA Health authorities know about COVID-19

  • The Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, has released a detailed statement on what South African health authorities now know about COVID-19. To read this statement click here.
  • A few key points from this statement are as follows:
    • The virus is shed through the airways and spreads by infected droplets passing from one individual to another.
    • The duration of viral shedding varies significantly between different studies and may depend on severity of disease or the nature of the study itself.
    • There is also variability with regard to Coronavirus persistence on various surfaces. A study found that SARS-CoV-2 remained detectable for up to 72 hours on some surfaces despite decreasing infectivity over time.
    • Symptoms may develop between two days and two weeks following exposure to the virus.
    • Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) is a serious complication of COVID-19. The lungs may become stiff and difficult to ventilate. It is for this reason that ARDS is associated with a high mortality rate.
    • There have been two major advancements in the case management of severely ill patients who require ventilatory support:
      • First is the advent of dexamethasone which has shown that deaths can be reduced by a third for patients on ventilators and can also help patients who only need supplemental oxygen.
      • Evidence increasingly supports the avoidance of invasive ventilation strategies as far as possible.
    • The NICD reported 10 700 COVID-19 admissions from 269 facilities (71 public- sector and 198 private-sector) in all nine provinces of South Africa between March 5 and June 21, 2020. These were the key findings:
      • The median age of COVID-19 admissions was 50 years
      • Among 8 245 (77%) patients with data on co-morbid conditions, 2 810 (34%) had one co-morbid condition and 3126 (37%) had two or more co-morbid conditions.
      • The most commonly reported co-morbid conditions were hypertension 3419 (59%) and diabetes 2813 (48%)
      • Some of the factors associated with in-hospital mortality were older age groups; male sex; and having co-morbid hypertension, diabetes, chronic cardiac disease, chronic renal disease, malignancy, HIV and obesity.

Annual fees extension

  • Council announced a further extension of the deadline for the HPCSA annual fees payment to 30 September 2020 to assist practitioners during this challenging period.
  • All annual practising certificates which expired on 31 March 2020 are now valid until 30 September 2020.

New Registrations 

  • Practitioners should continue to submit their applications for registration and/or restoration, electronically to: registrationgroup@hpcsa.co.za.
  • Applicants will be required to provide original documents upon the full resumption of services.

2020 HPCSA online symposia dates

  • HPCSA will be hosting its symposia on digital platforms to ensure that practitioners continue to obtain their CEUs.